1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

How to keep a freelancer from stealing your idea?

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by matapples01, Jun 8, 2009.

  1. matapples01

    matapples01 Regular Member

    May 15, 2008
    Likes Received:
    If you have a good idea for a tool but need the outside help of a programmer, how do you make sure they don't steal the idea and/or complete your project and then just sell the shit out of it out the back door?

    Is their some sort of freelancer ethics that says they will not resell the project they were contracted to do? With that being said, I know you could probably get contracts in place to stop the back-end sale of it but they'd need to agree to the project first. They could easily listen to your great "idea" and just quote you some ridiculous figure so you don't use them and then just develop it themselves for profit.

    Any thoughts on a plan of action to develop and protect an, albeit hypothetical, good idea?
  2. the_demon

    the_demon Jr. Executive VIP

    Nov 23, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Search Engine Marketing
    The Internet
    If you need a programmer find someone who is not experienced in your niche. I hired a programmer from BHW who was well acquainted with marketing... Of course I figured it would be a quick job, talked to the guy on the phone for weeks, etc... Wound up dragging on forever as we kept adding new features and last minute when he was about to send the code to me...he took my idea and ran with it to make money on his own. :(

    Lesson Learned:

    1. Never hire anyone without a contract. They will steal your ideas even if they deliver the product / service. They have the knowledge and will likely take your idea spin it and resell or use it for themselves.

    2. Never hire a person within your niche/market

    3. Avoid shady people

    4. Don't hire people in need of money. This is because people who are desperate will take your ideas and run. If the person who ripped me off was not in a bad financial situation I'm not sure he would have ran with it.... He was / is a nice guy overall but, a lass greed and desperation can sometimes get the better of us. :/

    That's my story [true],

    ~ The_Demon
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2009
  3. BHWCobra

    BHWCobra Newbie

    Mar 26, 2008
    Likes Received:
    Assuming you don't want to use the blackhat route, I'd suggest going through a formal process using one of the freelancing sites which has tight identity controls and get the coder to sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA).

    Document everything and keep records of communication etc.

    That way, even if a coder tries to nick your idea and sell it elsewhere, and you can't get to him/her personally, you can still threaten to sue the @rse off any hosting provider etc who supports them and have them shut sites down.